What A Difference A Year Makes: Dr. Nicolini’s First Year With UWO Journalism

12 05 2017

By Carissa Brzezinski (@CJBrzezinski)

Dr. Kristine Nicolini joined the journalism department this year as an assistant professor in public relations. She primarily teaches upper-level courses within the public relations major. These courses include: Principles of Public Relations, Public Relations Techniques, Research in Strategic Communication, Case Studies in Public Relations, and Public Relations Campaigns.

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  1. What was your professional experience before taking this position?

I have over 12 years of professional experience in public relations, strategic marketing, and corporate communication. I was fortunate to have many diverse opportunities in my career including shaping the marketing and strategic communication initiatives of Children’s Health System, Rockwell Automation, Bridgestone Firestone, Boys & Girls Club and St. Francis Xavier Educational System.

  1. What encouraged you to transition from a working professional to an educator?

During my career I have had two consistent passions, public relations and education. While working as a PR professional, I also taught one or two public relations courses at nearby universities. Five years ago, the chair of my department encouraged me to pursue my doctorate so I could teach at a university. I have always loved being in the classroom because of the unique ability one has to help students develop and grow. One of the best parts of my job is working with students and helping them achieve their goals. Even though I have transitioned into academia as my full-time role, I still work with organizations to help them achieve their communication goals through my consulting work.

  1. What is your favorite thing about the journalism department?

I love the dynamic, collaborative interaction between the faculty and students. Students are actively engaged and motivated to get the most out of their educational experience and this makes the department a vibrant, energetic and continuously evolving environment.

  1. What skills do you suggest students who want to go into journalism or public relations work on honing the most when they’re in school?

One of the most valuable skills students can possess as they transition into the job market is the ability to critically assess a situation and strategically formulate a plan of action. This skill takes time to develop but makes the difference between a mediocre communication professional and a cutting-edge leader in the field. I stress the importance of taking time to think through all aspects of the problem before trying to come up with a viable solution.

  1. What was the last book you read?

Besides academic textbooks and research methods books, the last book I read was Most Wanted by Lisa Scottoline. Her books have so many plot twists they keep you on the edge of your seat from the first page to the last sentence.

  1. What is your favorite family tradition?

One of my favorite family traditions is spending time at our cottage in Winneconne, WI. My grandfather built the cottage when my mom was little and we have spent many days there boating, fishing, and spending time together with my extended family. I love knowing my kids are having those same experiences and making lifelong memories.

  1. What is your next skill to master?

One of the aspects of public relations that I enjoy the most is the ever-changing nature of the field. I am continuously seeking new knowledge related to how technology impacts how PR professionals do their work. Additionally, I am particularly interested in how meta-data influences major public relations decisions related to crisis communication. I am learning the different ways researchers are utilizing meta-data as a tool to uncover these trends.

  1. What is one thing you couldn’t go a day without?

Starbucks!!! I am addicted to their Grande Iced Caramel Macchiato and their oatmeal.

 





April 26 NEWSPA Conference Brings Together Media Professionals, Students

19 04 2017

By Nikki Brahm

The 2017 NEWSPA conference will be held April 26 at UW Oshkosh, and will feature 35 sessions and speakers covering a variety of topics, including how to be a better writer or photographer, graphic design basics and careers.

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The conference, held in the UW Oshkosh Alumni Welcome and Conference Center and in the Gruenhagen Conference Center, is open with free admission for all UW Oshkosh journalism students. Download the schedule here.

“It’s a great chance to meet some professionals and to hear from people who our working in the field,” said NEWSPA Executive Secretary Barbara Benish.

The keynote presentation will begin at 11 a.m. and feature Pulitzer Prize winners Mark Johnson, a reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and Gary Porter, a former photographer at the Journal Sentinel who is now freelancing. The two were part of a team who won the 2011 Pulitzer for explanatory journalism.

Pulitzer Prize reporter Raquel Rutledge will also be speaking, as well as presenting students with $1,000 in cash prizes in NEWSPA’s first-ever In the Pulitzer Tradition Writing Contest, which coincides with the 100th anniversary of the Pulitzer Prizes. Rutledge judged the 12 entries in this special competition. In addition, more than 100 students will take home certificates of recognition in the regular NEWSPA newspaper and yearbook competition. This year, schools submitted more than 600 student entries.

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Benish said about 350 students and advisers from about 25 schools generally participate in the annual spring conference, which also awards a $500 scholarship to a student planning to study journalism in college.

“What’s exciting is the number of journalism students who are helping to put this event together,” Benish said.  “Students in Reporting and Writing for the Media will be writing stories for our fall newsletter, and students in Dr. Kristine Nicolini’s PR Techniques class have been put in charge of NEWSPA’s Facebook and Twitter accounts, and will be helping run the event.” Those students will be live tweeting at the conference, writing some stories for the fall newsletter, and taking photos to use in the newsletter, NEWSPA website or Facebook page.

In addition, students in Dr. Sara Steffes Hansen’s Application of New and Emerging Media class are updating the NEWSPA website, which will allow schools to register for the conference online and submit articles and photos electronically for the various NEWSPA contests.

Check out more about NEWSPA online, and on Facebook and Twitter.

 

 





UWO Ad Club Tours Element

14 04 2017

By Elizabeth Ritschard and Ashley Statz (@uwo_adclub)

The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Advertising Club recently toured Element, a full service agency, in Neenah, Wisconsin. Element has two offices, one in Neenah and the other in De Pere, with 28 employees combined between both locations. Ad Club members were able to see how Element works hard to achieve great client-employee relationships. The students met with Chloe De Young, public relations specialist and alumna of the Department of Journalism, who led part of the tour.

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Ad Club members with alumna, Chloe De Young.

Touring the renovated studio space was quite interesting because of both its design and functionality. The office atmosphere at Element was very eco-friendly. Repurposed materials including light fixtures, metal doors, and wood paneling were all used in the renovation. Within this space Element provides both traditional marketing services and website development in-house.

When working for its clients, Element analyzes target audience behavior, local and national competition, psycho-demographics, and even takes consumer reviews into consideration. Element primarily focuses on business to business (B2B) communication rather than business to consumer (B2C), however with an 80/20 ratio, they also understand the importance of looking at the bigger picture. Additionally, the team at Element produces applications and websites through strategic planning, programming, graphic analysis, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and analytic reports.

We loved touring this small town agency and getting to know the team that puts in long hours to produce fun advertisements! Are you interested in learning more about the agency life? Join us for a meeting! Ad Club meets Thursdays at 4 p.m. in Sage Hall 3420! We hope to see you there!





PRSSA Wins Pacesetter Award, Third Award For Year

1 04 2017

By Carissa Brzezinski (@CJBrzezinski)

Congratulations to The Dr. Julie Henderson PRSSA Chapter at UW Oshkosh for being the honored recipients of PRSSA National’s Pacesetter Chapter Recognition award for the month of February!

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The Pacesetter recognizes a chapter’s success in three areas: membership, national participation, and chapter development. UWO’s chapter was acknowledged for increasing chapter membership by 74 percent through on-campus engagement, participating in a national initiative by conducting high school outreach, attending a sponsor PRSA chapter’s meeting, and hosting a LinkedIn workshop for members.

Receiving the Pacesetter was the most recent achievement for the chapter, during what has been a busy and successful school year.

At the beginning of March, eighteen members attended the 2017 PRSSA Midwest Regional Conference, PRPalooza, in Chicago hosted by DePaul University. The focus of the conference was on music and entertainment public relations.

The conference consisted of three tracks for students to choose from: music, television and film, and theater. Agency tours were included at various establishments such as the House of Blues, Cinespace, Lincoln Hall, and more. Outside of the conference, members attended a private performance at Second City and visited UWO journalism alum, Shane Arman, at Ketchum’s Chicago office.

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In the fall semester, the chapter also had six members attend the 2016 PRSSA National Conference in Indianapolis. The students attended five days of professional development sessions, visited the Indianapolis Zoo, and even found time to bring home two awards.

The chapter received the Star Chapter award, and faculty adviser, Dr. Sara Steffes Hansen, was the honored recipient of the Dr. F.H. Teahan Faculty Adviser award.

 

Currently the chapter is busy preparing to participate in the National Organ Donor Awareness Competition (NODAC) this April.

For more information you can visit the chapter’s Blog, Facebook, or Twitter. Meetings are held Wednesdays at 5 p.m. in Sage 3412.





Advance-Titan 2016-2017 Awards and Achievements

31 03 2017

@Christina Basken (@ChristinaBasken)

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(In order top left to bottom right)

Morgan Van Lanen-Head Sports Editor, Austin Walther-Social Media Manager, Alex Nemec-Head News Editor, Mike Johrendt-Assistant Sports Editor, Ti Windisch-Managing Editor, Garrett Wright-Copy Desk Chief, Alyssa Grove-Campus Connections Editor, Kurt Ness-Web Manager, Trevor Hurst-Copy Desk Editor, Nicole Horner-Opinion Editor, Emily Fredrick-Head Photo Editor, Laura Dickinson- Assistant News Editor, Jessica Johnson-Editor-In-Chief, Haley Lentz-Advertising Manager. Not pictured: Alicia Kahl-Assistant Photo Editor.

 

The UW-Oshkosh Advance-Titan Student Newspaper staff headed to Madison on Feb. 23 to compete in the Wisconsin College Media Association Contest.

During this event, former Editor-In-Chief Katie Knox won first place best news reporting on a piece she wrote about a tattoo project that shed light on mental illness.

“Her piece actually started out as an assignment for my class, but it was so good that we wanted to feature it in the A-T,” said Vincent Filak, adviser of The Advance-Titan.

In addition to this award, reporter Erik Buchinger won first place best sports reporting on his story of UWO quarterback Brett Kasper connecting with his bone marrow transplant recipient, Phoenix Bridegroom.

“It was a huge success for Katie and Erik. I am very proud of both of them,” said Filak.

During fall 2016 semester members of the A-T celebrated a huge win in DC at the Associated Collegiate Press National College Media Convention.

The A-T team submitted their website in a large-scale competition for “best website design and content” among 30 other universities.

“We were all exhausted as we landed in Chicago, but when news hit we found our second wind and celebrated the accomplishment,” said Filak. “It was a pretty big deal for us. We competed on the large scale meaning that we went up against colleges with four times the population and budget, some even with their own web divisions.”

When asked what the biggest contributions were leading up to this victory, Jessica Johnson, the Editor-in-Chief of the Advance-Titan had this to say, “We owe a lot to Kurt Ness. He single-handedly switched our entire operating system over to WordPress, taking advice from all of us along the way making it feel like a real team effort. The website is faster, more reliable, much more user-friendly and visually pleasing.”

The advisor of the paper stated, “We won the award because of the overall website layout and content; reporting, writing and photography. It was especially gratifying to win the award because the judge for this particular entry is very well-known in the community of Journalism as being a very hard critic and I respect him very much,” Filak said.  

A new feature of the website is a section, located under the “report news” tab, where students can submit ideas and feedback on what gets posted.

Looking to the future, the goal of the Advance-Titan is to increase readership and make the student body here at UWO feel more connected to the paper and provide a place for their voices to be heard.





Three Students Named Finalists in Photographer’s Forum Contest

27 03 2017

By Ashley Larson (@aelarson6)

Congratulations to Katie Hanson, Crystal Knuth and Allison Tetrick for being named finalists in Photographer’s Forum’s 37th Annual College & High School Photography Contest!

Katie Hanson

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We were given our portrait assignment in Media Photo II class and I had no idea what to have as my subject, so I decided to go with my favorite subject: sports. I decided I wanted to do something with shadows to give the photo a different type of feel, and it worked.

This photo was like nothing I have ever shot before and I loved how it turned out. It took a little bit of experimenting with lighting to get the shadow to fall where I wanted it.

I was able to experiment with a couple different techniques and really enjoyed the process to make this photo.

There are so many submissions to this contest each year, so I was surprised and excited to find out I was a finalist. It is pretty cool to have your work recognized.

 

Crystal Knuth

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I was on a volunteer trip in Antigua, Guatemala when I took the photo I submitted for the contest. As our volunteer group was walking back to our house from construction work, we ran into two young boys playing soccer in the street. The two boys had a tremendous amount of energy because they had to keep their ball from rolling down a slanted road. While playing soccer, one of the boys ran up to the side of the building, and I instantly saw the common color of red between the wall of the building, the shirt of the young boy, and the parked motorcycle. I was inspired by the connection of red, and by the added energy the color brought to the picture.

Every photographer has a plethora of pictures, but only a selected few will catch your eye to become some of your favorite work. The feeling you get when you fall in love with one of your pictures is difficult to describe, but the picture I submitted did just that. I submitted this particular picture because I eventually want to travel with photojournalism.

To be named a finalist in the photo contest not only feels great, but serves as a nice confidence boost to keep pursuing my passion in photojournalism. My heart leads me into my dedication of storytelling, and pictures allow me to show the full frame of unseen stories. My ultimate goal is to teach through my work in photography.

 

Allison Tetrick

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I knew I wanted to go for a lighter, fun feel. A lot of the studio work I have seen seems to be serious and that really isn’t me. Luckily, Zoe (pictured) was more than happy to help me bring that idea to life!

As soon as I started taking pictures of Zoe I knew I wanted her to be laughing. This photo in particular, everything just came together. The lighting was pretty much how I wanted and there was no reflection on her glasses.

This photo makes me smile. It is as simple as that. Photography, to me, is more than just taking photos. It is about telling stories and expressing feelings.





Display Your Best Self: PRSSA Holds LinkedIn Workshop

1 03 2017

By Ashley Larson (@aelarson6)

As a senior, the real world is right around the corner. With it comes the daunting task of job (or internship) hunting. Recently, PRSSA hosted Barb Benish and Dr. Sara Steffes Hansen, who gave a LinkedIn workshop about how to use this important networking platform along with one-on-one help for attendees. Students of all skill levels met to improve their profiles or, like me, get started on the networking site.

Dr. Hansen kicked the workshop off with a video explaining why students should make a LinkedIn profile. Turns out, it’s not just for well-connected CEOs! Building a strong profile now may help you land that awesome job right after graduation.

For new users, Benish built a profile from scratch and highlighted best practices along the way. Her first tip? Make sure you have a strong résumé! It makes creating your LinkedIn profile a piece of cake.

She also pointed out the importance of a good profile picture. LinkedIn users with a quality photo are 21 times more likely to be viewed and 36 times more likely to be messaged.

Your profile summary on LinkedIn is key, according to Benish, because it’s like your digital elevator pitch. Sell yourself! All it takes is a few short paragraphs and bullet points to highlight your skills, accomplishments and goals. Sprinkle in some personality and employers may be interested in hiring you.

Speaking of personality, remember to change the URL on your public profile to your name, if possible. This makes it shorter, neater and easier to remember.

Badges are another component of a strong LinkedIn profile. For example, New and Emerging Media students who take and pass the HubSpot inbound marketing certification exam can display a badge on their profile. PRSSA members can showcase their membership card on LinkedIn as well.

Another cool thing about LinkedIn is its portfolio capabilities. Upload your résumé. Share some writing samples or photographs. If you’re working on something awesome for class, work or your internship, add it to your profile.

As students, adding courses related to the field you want to work in is a great way to show prospective employers that you have practical knowledge.

Don’t forget to interact with other users! After all, LinkedIn is a social network. Endorsements from coworkers and supervisors show that you have skills. Connect with your professors and classmates—you never know what connections they may have.